On May the 4th 2014 MK1 Performance Conversions held our first Action Day at Blyton Park Circuit in Lincolnshire.
Thanks to the overwhelming support of the Members of the MK1 forum & early Mini owners from all over the UK & Europe it was generally accepted as a major success, attracting not only exceptional vehicles, but an array of famous faces from the hey day of the Mini Racing scene.
Over the next few days I will be posting a selection of images & video clips that give an idea of what it was like to be there.
We are already planning a similar event for next year, so if you want to see the best selection of early tuned & racing Mini’s anywhere in the world, you had better watch this space.
The original idea that came to my good mate Pete Flanagan & I was that the MK1 forum had become popular but many of us had never met, especially the overseas members, most Mini shows had to some extent become a tad tired and predictable and a Mk1 Performance meet up seemed the logical step forward
We decided that we could do another sort of Mini Show that enabled both drivers & spectators to share in the excitement that Minis created back in the 1960’s.
People would be encouraged to show their cars, whatever they were, but the emphasis of our Action Day would be exactly that . . ACTION!
There are 1 or two “Mini Action Days” elsewhere in the UK, but these are mainly in the South, excluding many fans unable to travel the long distances involved.
What we needed was a central location, somewhere that would be reasonable accessible for people everywhere.
We booked Blyton Park Circuit in Lincolnshire & began to put the word out. Little did we know at the time what sort of reaction our little idea would receive, or for that matter what a superb Mini friendly venue we had stumbled across.
We were greatly helped in our endeavours by Javelin Trackdays who agreed to run the track part of the event for us. Their help & support was fantastic & without them both Pete & I know we would have really struggled.
You can visit Javelin’s web site here. JAVELIN
We put the word out about our venture on the MK1 Performance Conversions Forum. “THE” gathering place for people interested in using classic minis as well as simply showing them off, and the reaction was instantaneous.
People seemed to like the idea of an action centred event, with no VIP area, no club politics and on the other end of the scale no booming stereos and no sound offs!
The 50 track places we had to offer were booked up in no time at all, cars from as far afield as California, France & Belgium as well as all over the UK booked in. In no time at all we had almost every variant from a mildly tuned 850, through to what is probably one of the most highly developed race Minis in the world. The former Mike Youles Special now owned by Nicolas Pinon.
Using his amazing network of contacts Pete started to invite an array owners of some of the most special Minis on the planet. Soon we were pretty sure we had an event that “our sort” of Mini owners would really enjoy.
Before we knew it, our little Track day was growing into something that even in our wildest dreams we couldn’t have expected.
Pete & I managed to arrange for a number of speakers for an informal get together on Saturday night. Barry Hawkins, formerly of Downton, Jeff Williamson, former UK Rally Cross Champion & “Whizzo” Williams all agreed to “do a turn” which went down very well with the 80 or so people who attended.
They were joined by former Saloon car Champion Warwick banks on the Sunday & very kindly agreed to award our prizes on the day.
Whizzo also spent most of Sunday giving free driving tuition to anyone who was brave enough to invite him into their cars. Needless to say, this went down very well with everyone who was lucky enough to benefit from his experience
Not only did we manage to attract the largest gathering of really special Minis to Blyton, but the somewhat less well known & some would say less loved GRP variants were made to feel most welcome.
With the help of Jeroen Booij of “MAXIMUM MINI” we were also able to gather together a really good selection of these “Plastic fantastics”. The GRP variant section proved to be very popular & we have already received promises of more to come to future similar events.
I think everyone agreed that some of these cars proved to be amongst the most entertaining on track all day. Rich Hawcroft’s GTM (Mentioning no names).
It is absolutely impossible to pick out all the notable & genuinely historic Minis that appeared on the day, but amongst my favourites are, from left to right; The Ex BVRT European Saloon car Championship winning car KDK 320 F, LBL 66 D the original Works Rally car in it’s time warp state with damage sustained on it's last ever rally, VPR 470, the original Minisprint demonstrator as driven by Stirling Moss in 1966 & the legendary “Coldwell twin cam” a stunning 1000cc Clubman racer from the late 1960’s. All these cars are rarely if ever seen on the “normal” Mini scene.
To see a short video of the day, click on the image opposite. It gives some feeling of the great cars and action that Blyton saw on the 4th of May this year.
They say a picture paints a thousand words, so here are a few pictures taken on the day.
There is also a thread on the MK1 FORUM where there are lots more pictures to be seen.
Remember to check back regularly for details of the 2nd MK1 Action Day to be held over 2 days in early May 2015.
Thanks to all the photographers who took & posted the above pictures.
Personally, I would like to say a massive thank you to everyone who took the time & effort to drag themselves & their cars down to Blyton last May to make the First MK1 PC Action Day the success it was.
Pete & I could only do so much, the event went so well because of all the people who wanted to join in the fun and drive their cars as well as spending a very enjoyable day talking about them.
Roll on 2015.
More details to follow.
Oh yes, and while I think about it.
As well as all the other things that made our first MK1 PC Action Day different to all other events was that we raised a great deal of money for our chosen charity.